The Ottawa Senators will reach the halfway point of the season after tonight's game in Phoenix against the Arizona Coyotes and it has been a pretty disappointing season to date. Ottawa will enter the game already 10 points out of a playoff spot and the Senators look set to miss the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1995-1996.
Despite another solid performance from Patrick Wiercioch, he will be a healthy scratch for Chris Phillips tonight. Curtis Lazar will also return for Colin Greening and Craig Anderson will start.
Here are the lines and pairings from Sylvain St-Laurent.
MacArthur - Turris - Chiasson
Hoffman - Pageau - Ryan
Condra - Zibanejad - Lazar
Michalek - Legwand - Stone
Methot - Karlsson
Cowen - Ceci
Phillips - Gryba
Some notes for tonight:
- LOL Chris Phillips is playing.
- Erik Karlsson has about 30% of the Senators unblocked shot attempts during 5-on-4 play this season. That might be starting to get easy to defend.
- Mika Zibanejad was demoted with Jean-Gabriel Pageau taking the place between Mike Hoffman and Bobby Ryan during yesterday's skate. Will that last during the game?
- Seriously though, Chris Phillips is playing in an NHL game.
- The Senators don't have anyone on pace for 60 points or 30 goals at the moment.
- Milan Michalek has 0.25 points/game this season which is by far the worst of his career. His previous worst was 0.43 points/game in his rookie season back in 2005-2006.
- Craig Anderson being pulled against Colorado was the first time any Senators goaltender has been pulled this season.
- Ottawa has actually played quite well on this road trip but hasn't been able to score with three goals on 80 shots.
- Mark Stone has just 54 shots all season, lucky for him he is shooting 18.5% though.
- Karlsson has five points in his last five games but hasn't scored a goal since 7 December.
- Karlsson leads the Senators in shots on goal by a long way but the Coyotes have two defenceman at the top. Oliver Ekman-Larsson leads the team with 125 shots, Keith Yandle is second with 123. Shane Doan is the highest forward at 94.
- We here at Silver Seven would like to wish good luck to the New England Patriots, the official NFL team of Silver Seven, in their playoff game against the Baltimore Ravens tonight.
Here are some stats for the two teams tonight. All stats are from NHL.com except Corsi and Fenwick are from naturalstattrick.com.
|Goals||Mike Hoffman||13||Mikkel Boedker||11|
|Assists||Erik Karlsson||21||Keith Yandle||22|
|Points||Erik Karlsson||28||Antoine Vermette||27|
|Shots||Erik Karlsson||149||Oliver Ekman-Larsson||125|
|Average Ice time||Erik Karlsson||27:22||Oliver Ekman-Larsson||25:30|